Alibi V.29 No.14 • April 2-8, 2020 

Odds & Ends

Odds and Ends

Dateline: South Carolina

A restaurant is accused of reselling frozen pizzas purchased at Costco as homemade gourmet pies. The Post and Courier reports that Coquin—a 5-month-old wine bar located in Charleston, S.C.—began advertising a new pizza program via Instagram and its website. The new menu items were priced at $18 for a cheese pizza and $20 for a pie with meat or vegetable toppings. Last week, reporters from The Post and Courier received reports that the pizzas were not being made from scratch in the restaurant's kitchen. After making an order by phone, reporters say they watched Coquin chef and owner Chip Grimalda leave the restaurant and drive to his home. He then left his home carrying cardboard boxes that read: “Fresh Pizza, Oven Baked.” The reporters were unable to determine if the pizzas had been baked at the chef's home or in the restaurant. Upon further investigation, four-pack boxes of Kirkland Signature Cheese Pizza with Breadcrumb Crusts were reportedly discovered inside the restaurant's trash cans. These frozen supermarket pizzas often sell at Costco for no more than $10 per four-pack. When confronted about the controversy and asked if the pizzas were in fact purchased at Costco, Grimalda denied the accusations. “I don’t know what you’re talking about. It’s definitely not Costco, and that’s all I have to say.” When investigators brought up the discarded pizza boxes in the restaurant's trash cans, Grimalda said, “There’s a lot of Airbnb’s in the neighborhood.”

Dateline: United Kingdom

Thanks to restrictions on public movement that have been implemented in London, England, highway maintenance crews have finally been able to repaint the iconic crosswalk depicted on the Beatles' Abbey Road album cover. The Guardian reports that a crew of workers descended on the crosswalk on Mar. 24—only a day after the UK's prime minister announced a full lockdown in response to the COVID-19 health emergency. The location was designated as a site of national importance in 2010, meaning it can only be altered with explicit permission from authorities. “This London zebra crossing is no castle or cathedral but, thanks to the Beatles and a 10-minute photoshoot one August morning in 1969, it has just as strong a claim as any to be seen as part of our heritage,” said John Penrose, minister for tourism and heritage at the time. The famous album cover depicts the four Beatles crossing the titular Abbey Road single file at the crosswalk. On a normal day, hundreds of tourists are said to visit the site to pose for pictures and pay tribute to their favorite band, causing the painted lines to fade with time. But recent lockdown measures have afforded authorities the chance to repaint them. A spokesperson for Westminster City Council said: “This is a very busy zebra crossing and we repainted the line markings to ensure visibility and increased safety for drivers and pedestrians. Our contractors follow government advice on limiting the spread of COVID-19, including social distancing and hand washing.”

Dateline: United Kingdom

Police in England have dyed the “Blue Lagoon of Buxton” black to keep tourists from visiting during a nationwide lockdown. According to CNN, the UK's prime minister Boris Johnson announced last week that residents were required to stay in their homes to curb the spread of COVID-19. Residents are allowed to leave their homes only to go shopping for basic necessities, performing one form of exercise a day, providing medical services or going to work at critical businesses. But the ban was reportedly not deterring people from visiting the Blue Lagoon, a popular tourist destination in Derbyshire, England. The site is a former lime quarry that was used as a chemical weapons storage depot by the British Royal Air Force during World War II. Over the years, water has flooded the quarry, creating an artificial lake. A number of caustic chemicals have leached into the lake over the years, causing the water to turn a brilliant blue. In the past, police have dyed the water black to keep visitors from swimming in the toxic water. Last week, the Buxton police department made a Facebook post announcing that they had dyed the water black once again. “We have attended the location this morning and used water dye to make the water look less appealing,” it wrote. “Please stay at home.”

Dateline: New York

New York City health officials have warned residents to avoid participating in group sex or performing anilingus. According to BuzzFeed News, New York City citizens have been provided with healthy sex guidelines by city officials. According to the official advisory, “You are your safest sex partner. Masturbation will not spread COVID-19, especially if you wash your hands (and any sex toys) with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before and after sex.” The advisory goes on to say that the “next safest partner is someone you live with.” It then warns against having sex with anyone “outside your household” but says “if you do have sex with other, have as few partners as possible and avoid group sex.” The advisory suggests using “video dates, sexting or chat rooms” as an alternative to in-person sex. It also warns against kissing and “rimming (mouth on anus)” as these practices can spread the virus.

Compiled by Joshua Lee. Email your weird news to josh@alibi.com.